Saints have been given the green light to land influential midfielder Victor Wanyama after Celtic confirmed they are prepared to sell him this summer.

Mauricio Pochettino is in the market for a defensive central midfielder to compete with Morgan Schneiderlin and Jack Cork next season and Wanyama is highly rated and much sought after following two successful campaigns in Scotland.

The 21-year-old Kenyan midfield enforcer, who is said to have been tracked by the likes of Arsenal and Manchester United, could be available for about £10m.

Celtic chairman Ian Bankier said: “I can’t confirm anything other than to say Victor Wanyama has been a very special player for Celtic last season and the season before.

“Yes, there is a lot of interest for him. Our financial model is to buy and sell players.

“Therefore if the right offer comes for Victor Wanyama, he’s happy with it, his agent’s happy with it, we’ll take it.”

Wanyama moved to Celtic two years ago for £900,000 from Belgium side Beerschot AC, where he made his breakthrough as a pro.

Since joining the Scottish giants he has made 91 appearances in two seasons, scoring 13 goals and winning two SPL titles and the young player of the year award.

Wanyama has also been capped 25 times for Kenya and is now captain of his country.

He admitted that he may well move on this summer with Premier League sides circling.

“I still have a contract with Celtic and I am their player,” he said.

“If anything comes up and it is good for me and the club, from there I will move on.”

Another player long linked with Saints, striker Gary Hooper, could also be on the move.Celtic don’t want to sell but the man who has attracted bids from the like of Saints, Norwich and Hull in recent times is out of contract next year and hasn’t accepted a new deal.

“We are not resigned to losing him,” said Bankier.

“He's done a fantastic job for the club. He's a great striker. Neil (Lennon) loves him, the club love him.

"It's very much up to him as to what he wants to do. At the moment that's unconfirmed."